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A Common Theme On Defense

Discussion in 'RayGator's Swamp Gas' started by jaxg8r, Dec 20, 2020.

  1. jaxg8r

    jaxg8r VIP Member

    Jan 21, 2008
    After re-watching last nights game, something once again jumped off the screen. The lack of fundamental tackling by the Gator defense. Specifically, in the secondary. For all the arrows sent TG's way, and deservedly so, is that on the coaches? Shouldn't the ability to wrap up and tackle be literally muscle memory after hundreds of practices and games. Easily the poorest tackling team I remember in 50+ years of watching Gator football.

    On two of Harris' touchdowns, there are multiple defenders that he pinballs off of as he strolls into the end zone. Not one defender broke down and tried to wrap up. A common theme throughout the year. I just hope all these head hunters that we're told are due on campus next year are legit.

    I'd value Fee's opinion on the lack of fundamentals a simple layman sees.
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  2. Skink

    Skink GC Hall of Fame

    Very good question. At this point I don’t know if it’s mostly on the players or their position coaches. Seems less likely it’s on Grantham. In fact it’s pretty strong reason to not blame TG as much as we do for this awful D this year. In the end players gotta make the plays, and when some of the absolute worst at it are upperclassmen and even seniors, the responsibility should fall largely on them at this point.

    Bama wasn’t missing tackles like we were. Elam’s open field tackle on 4th & 3 was a standout for us - Bama was making tackles like that all night.
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  3. 06GATORS08

    06GATORS08 GC Hall of Fame

    Dec 12, 2009
    Another theme: Confusion
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  4. TJtheGator

    TJtheGator GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 3, 2007
    Orlando, FL
    Our secondary this year seemed filled with a lot of attitude and not much soundness.

    Hope that gets corrected.

    And yeah please fire Grantham.
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  5. swangator

    swangator Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    3rd down.

    My goodness how many 3rd down conversions did they have? A dozen?

    3rd and Grantham is an accurate moniker. It’s been the single biggest issue and why we aren’t SEC Champs and going to the playoffs.

    Tackling certainly plays a part in that. So does scheme — seems OC’s dial up the perfect call on 3rd almost every time. They know exactly how to attack Grantham based on distance.
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  6. upstategator

    upstategator GC Legend

    Nov 1, 2017
    You mean throwing your shoulder at a 235lb running back is not good coaching?...if you watch bama on defense they play pissed off. Even though we put up 46 they were so agreesive and we play scared.
  7. thom1507

    thom1507 All American

    Oct 13, 2019
    Where do position coaches get their training from? While I am sure there are coaching seminars and such, most of the real learning comes from the coordinators and head coaches they work under. They only implement what their coordinator wants to do or emphasize.

    I imagine just like in other professions, sometimes you have bosses that will listen to your feedback while other bosses want you to only do what they say.
  8. bobcatgator

    bobcatgator Senior

    Nov 24, 2011
    The shoulder throwing drives me crazy but I don’t think I would classify their play as scared but rather lazy. Outside of Elam, the secondary play has been awful all year but I will say I thought Brad Stewart played one of his better games last night.

    The tackling is beyond terrible which I think is a direct reflection of coaching. I was shocked to see that Florida lead the SEC in sacks but I’m also going to guess they gave up the most third down conversions as a percentage. Again, this type of Jekyll and Hyde defense is a reflection of coaching.

    I’m getting real tired of watching Cox run himself out of the play so often and I don’t understand why the DL and LB are taught to engage so long with would-be-blockers....shed and make a tackle. Too often last night did I see Miller just engage and do nothing on trying to get rid of the guy. That’s not the technique we teach here on our high school team and I definitely don’t see Clemson or Bama doing this so what gives? Again...all back to coaching and a couple need to go. Personally I would love to see both Strong and Mason on the sidelines next year in some capacity.
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  9. ufg8r3283

    ufg8r3283 Premium Member

    Dec 7, 2019
    This was THE biggest issue I noticed last night.

    Guys seemed confused. This late in the year, you shouldn't have multiple players looking completely lost on where they should be. And I'm not talking about the jumping around on the LOS.

    Is Grantham's scheme just too damn complex?
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  10. recongator

    recongator GC Legend

    Nov 26, 2017
    All I know it is a correctable issue. Remember how Chauncey improved light years his open field tackling his final year? The right coach focusing at practice can do wonders
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  11. g8wayg8r

    g8wayg8r GC Legend

    Apr 8, 2007
    St Charles, MO
    Maybe more time watching film would let them understand tendencies so they would be so lost. You would think there would be somebody watching every opponent and using a big data approach.
  12. chemgator

    chemgator GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 3, 2007
    Bama's wide receivers tackle better than our defensive backs (and some of our linebackers). Let that sink in for a minute.
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  13. RealGatorFan

    RealGatorFan Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    It is 100% on the coaches. How do you know? It's systemic. It isn't one or 2 players but pretty much the entire defense. Additionally, there is no improvement from Game 1 to Game 11. None. You could say that Covid made it difficult because Grantham didn't have a full off season to work with but it hasn't prevented other teams from improving as the season went on. Alabama was plagued by the same issues early in the season and by Game 4 was already seeing a transition to a more sound defense. While they whittled things down to 8 points per game, our defense maintained or got worse to the tune of 25 points per game over the last 7 games and 4 games where they gave up 600 yards. Worse, since the Arkansas game, we played every game where the opponent fielded a slashed roster and in many cases were starting true freshmen and still were competitive until late in the game. In a number of game, Alabama either played the same teams a week before we did or right after and the results were embarrassing. You can give Grantham some slack at the beginning of the year but there was no improvement in the fundamentals, not even the basic things. None of our defensive seniors will make a splash in the NFL, because not having those skills will end their careers in a year or 2. Might as well collect what they can because not a one will last more than a year or 2. I can't think of any of them in the secondary that are ready. Along the line a little better but still I could see a scenario where none go pro, even the seniors. I wouldn't be surprised if all of them are 3rd round picks at best.
  14. gator7_5

    gator7_5 GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 9, 2007
    To be fair, lots of people bounced off Harris this year.

    Being out of place and confused? Yeah, no excuse at all for that. Grantham has to go.
  15. ajjaxgator

    ajjaxgator GC Hall of Fame

    Aug 3, 2007
    " It's OK to get blocked. It's NOT OK to stay blocked."
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  16. TEKgator22

    TEKgator22 GC Legend

    Nov 30, 2008
    CGJ was a disaster that year in terms of tackling. He was constantly whiffing or getting tricked.

    Next year he was vastly improved and a completely different defender IMO. Gives me hope that the tackling is correctable. I would image no Spring Practice and limited preseason didn’t help.
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  17. chemgator

    chemgator GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 3, 2007
    I would say that it is more accurate to say that all 11 players on Bama's defense play aggressive on every play. On a typical play, maybe a third of our defenders appear to playing aggressively, and they aren't always near the ball.

    Take a look at Najee Harris hurdling a UF defender (Wilson?). Look at the way the CB fell at his feet and was nowhere near where Harris was. He looked lost and confused, maybe like he fainted or something. Harris did not need to go anywhere near as high as he did to clear the DB. Harris committed to the hurdle before the CB got anywhere near him, because he knew that UF DB's fall at your feet and hope you trip over them. They don't want any part of the upper- or mid-body of any ballcarrier that weighs more than 200 lbs.
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  18. trump4life

    trump4life All American

    Oct 7, 2020
    Failure to teach players how to properly line up on defense, particularly in the execution of the game plan. Poor fundamentals on defense.

    On offense, either poor OL recruiting or poor strength and conditioning. Poor OL coaching from a coach on a team that uses a RPO offense.

    For those that want TG to be fired, you can add Heavsey and secondary coaches as well. Also, bring back Rich Tuten or a clone as S&C coach.
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  19. Pnick81

    Pnick81 All American

    Feb 1, 2015
    Practice time has been cut shorter and shorter over the yrs. I wonder how much time is spent on fundamentals like blocking and tackling.
  20. bobcatgator

    bobcatgator Senior

    Nov 24, 2011
    True but there are plenty of other teams that aren’t displaying these blocking and tackling issues. My son gets QB lessons from an old timer former D2 college football coach and NFL scout who is both hilarious and intelligent as they come. He was great friends with the one and only Paul Brown who told him one time, “John, if we can’t accomplish what we need to do in practice in an hour and a half we aren’t coaching right.”